Bamboo For You

The Great Blue Heron, The Hooded Merganser, & The Wood Stork

 

 

1-9-2007

Hoping everyone had a wonderful New Years holiday.

I got up pretty early this morning.  It was just barely getting light out and it was pretty cold, at least for Florida.  I went into the kitchen and checked the outside thermometer.  47 degrees.  I took a look out the back door and there was a Great Blue Heron huddled by the edge of the pond.  This Great Blue Heron is very skittish.  Every time he has been here before and I have opened the door to take his picture, he has flown off.  So, I decided to set up the camera tripod inside the sliding glass door and I took this picture through the door, from inside the house.

I got the coffee pot fired up and went into the office to get the computer fired up.  Now that I think about it, it was cold enough that I probably should have gotten the fireplace fired up, but anyway, after a short while, as the darkness slowly surrendered to the dawn, I took another shot of the Heron.

He was still pretty lethargic, just huddled there by the side of the pond, not taking much interest in anything.  By this time the coffee was ready, I poured myself a cup and went back to my office to check email.  After checking a few emails, the image of the Heron kept nagging at me, so I got up, and went back into the kitchen to check on my visitor.  The dawn was breaking and the Heron was beginning to come to life, easing himself down into the water and slowly looking around the pond for the prospect of some breakfast.

I went back to my office, checked another email and then, back to the kitchen to check on the Heron.  By this time he was in full hunting mode, determined to find that next meal.

I wanted to stay and watch him, but alas, the call of duty was greater than the call of nature's wonder and I reluctantly made my way back to my office to really begin the work day. 

After working all day, I decided to grab my camera and enjoy what was left of the daylight.  To my delight, the Hooded Merganser was at the pond, so I snuck up on him and caught a couple of pictures.  I approached him with a large palm tree trunk between us, so that he could not see me approaching.  As I peeked around the side of the tree and the Merganser spotted me, he swam so that the palm tree was between us again.  We played this little game for a while, a kind of hide and seek around the palm tree.

He's a pretty special visitor to our pond.  We are really glad that he has decided to make this his winter home this year.

Finally, after taking a stroll through the woods with my camera and not taking a single photo, the light was fading and I headed back to the house.  As I was approaching the house from the woods, I spotted the Wood Stork, fishing at the pond.  He was on the far side of the pond, working his way over toward my direction.  I decided to just stand there by the pond, being as still as possible, waiting for him to work his way over to my side of the pond.  Sure enough, in his methodical way of poking around under the water, taking a few steps to the left, poking in the water, a few more steps to the left, eventually he worked his way around the pond until he was right in front of me and I was able to get this shot of him.

Well, that's it for now.  I'm calling it a day.

Best regards,

Bamboo For You